The Origins of "Scotch"

“Scotch” as a brand name for 3M tapes is believed to have its origins in a disgruntled auto-body painter who was using the new 3M masking tape. It was not sticking properly because it was not entirely coated with adhesive backing. He told a salesman to take the tape back to his “stingy Scotch bosses” and use more adhesive.

The story may be embellished, but the masking tape was improved and “Scotch” was soon put into use as a brand name.

The two billionth roll of “Scotch” masking tape was produced in 1957, 30 years after it went into mass production.

Images

Scotch Brand Tartan Logo

Scotch Brand Tartan Logo

In 1945, the company adopted the red, green, and yellow plaid pattern for packaging, based on the Wallace clan tartan, with the advice of New York color consultant Arthur Allen. | Source: Minnesota Historical Society View File Details Page

Masking Tape Applied to Car

Masking Tape Applied to Car

Masking tape was developed in 1925 to meet a need in the automobile industry to aid in painting car finishes. | Source: Minnesota Historical Society View File Details Page

Cellophane Tape

Cellophane Tape

The two billionth roll of “Scotch” masking tape was produced in 1957, 30 years after it went into mass production. | Source: Minnesota Historical Center View File Details Page

Cellophane Tape

Cellophane Tape

The two billionth roll of “Scotch” masking tape was produced in 1957, 30 years after it went into mass production. | Source: Minnesota Historical Society View File Details Page

Scottie McTape

Scottie McTape

Scottie, the mascot figure, began to appear in company advertising in 1946. | Source: Minnesota Historical Society View File Details Page

Scotch Tape "Good News" Ad

Scotch Tape "Good News" Ad

An ad highlighting extra large rolls of Scotch tape for commercial use. | Source: Minnesota Historical Society View File Details Page

Two Billion Rolls

Two Billion Rolls

Herbert Buetow holds the gold-core, two-billionth roll of commercial size “Scotch” masking tape as William L. McKnight and Richard Drew look on. | Source: Minnesota Historical Society View File Details Page

Street Address:

900 Bush Ave., St. Paul [map]

Cite this Page:

Marjorie Pearson, Summit Envirosolutions, Inc., “The Origins of "Scotch" ,” Saint Paul Historical, accessed May 23, 2017, http://saintpaulhistorical.com/items/show/358.

Related Tours

Subjects

Tour navigation:  Previous | Tour Info | Next

Share this Story